The Studeblogger

Monday, June 23, 2008

So close I can taste it...

I got to spend some Stude time last weekend. The Lark's been untouched since Christmas; we put the engine in but trapped the driver's exhaust between the oil pan and the tie rods. Boy, did that hack me off! But we were running out of daylight when the engine went back in, and none of us noticed (although we thought we'd tied the pipes securely out of the way). I wondered why it was so hard to steer afterward! Yes, it put a nice dent in the pan, but it's at the sump end, and fairly shallow, so no internal problems.

Anyway, some time opened up, and I hooked up the hoist to free the trapped pipe. All went well - my son cranked up the block about 3/4", I slid the pipe free from underneath, and all's well.

Almost. The engine, mounts freed of their frame brackets, decided it wanted to slip backward about 1/4" - the thickness of one of the mounting studs. Try as I might, including "persuading" the block forward with a 2x4 between the head and firewall, I could not get the studs to slip back into the mounting holes.

So I turned to the SDC Forum for answers. Most of the suggestions were to loosen the transmission-to-crossmember bolts and then lift the engine slightly to move it into position. But one poster told me something that put fear into my heart: the transmission mounts, though visually nearly identical, are not interchangeable. And if they are, in fact, installed opposite of what they should be, the symptom would be exactly this.

He advised that I may need to jack up the trans slightly, swap the mounts (which as you may recall were a booger to get in), swap the mounts and then tighten it all back up. I hope to tackle this on the coming weekend (the last weekend was too hot to work outside). Stand by, Lark fans!

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